2016 American Society of Clinical Oncology Quality Care Symposium

A number of recent initiatives have required health care providers to think more proactively about the value of the care they deliver. This is especially true in the treatment of patients with cancer, where costs associated with treatment have continued to rise and the efficiency of providers has been called into question. Now, the country is shifting from a fee-for-service model of health care to one based more on the value of the care provided, as defined by the use of responsible, evidence-based treatment, effective management of resources, and high-quality outcomes. As a result, the quality of care is becoming an important focus for all stakeholders. 

Although stakeholders generally agree that value-based models of care are needed for the delivery of high-quality cancer care, many have struggled to define and track appropriate quality metrics. Additionally, although many institutions have succeeded for decades in a volume-based service model, the transition to a system that encourages the optimization of care can present challenges for maintaining high-level outcomes safely. Reimbursement and other incentives are only becoming more centered on the quality of care delivery, making these facets vital to institutions that hope to be successful in the future.

In 2013, after identifying a profound need within the industry, the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) held its first annual Quality Care Symposium. The intent of the conference, which has been maintained in subsequent years, has been to bring together the top leaders in the field of cancer to share strategies and methods for measuring and improving the quality and safety of cancer care. 

This year, the ASCO Quality Care Symposium (February 26-27, 2016; Phoenix, AZ) continued this commitment to bettering the quality of cancer care. The meeting saw more than 7000 abstracts and presentations covering topics such as payer–provider relationships, the changing landscape of provider organizations, and new ways to capitalize on health information technology analytics. For providers, patients, and payers, the symposium has proven itself to be a dynamic program fostering collaboration among different health care groups and promoting innovation for how cancer is delivered and understood.  

doctorRevealing Treatment Costs at the Point of Care Beneficial to Patients and Providers

Access to cost data at the point-of-care can be beneficial to both physicians and patients, according to one presentation.

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advanced imagingAdvanced Imaging Overused in Patients With Early-Stage Breast Cancer

Findings suggest that patients with early-stage breast cancer often undergo advanced imaging tests despite national guidelines recommending against the practice. 

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clinical pathways

Physician Adherence and Efficiency Improved Through Web-Based Clinical Pathways 

A study presented at the conference reported some key tools that can be implemented to improve physician adherence to clinical pathways.

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